COLLEGE STATION, Tex. (KBTX)- Erika Rodriguez of College Station says she’s proof that cancer doesn’t care how old you are.
The 32-year-old mother was diagnosed this year with Invasive Ductal Carcinoma, or IDC, after noticing some abnormality with one of her breasts.
“I noticed my right breast looked different from the left one and I started paying more attention to it over time before I realized there was a lump and my skin started to sink-in and something didn’t look right,” said Rodriguez.
Her husband, Jonathan, 28, encouraged her to go get it checked out by a doctor.
“Cancer doesn’t care how old you are. You have to mind your body and just be very aware of any changes going on because if I would have caught it early I could have gotten it out and went on with my life,” said Rodriguez.
“Mentally, physically, emotionally, it’s all stressful,” said Jonathan. “But she’s strong. She’s surprised a lot of us.”
“It’s been rough because I’m just tired all the time and it affects me in other ways. My eyesight gets blurry and it makes it sometimes tough to drive and do school work,” said Rodriguez.
Rodriguez is finding support with her family, a local breast cancer survivor group, and her mother who also battled breast cancer.
“She was diagnosed when she was 50. She’s been cancer-free now for 9 years. It makes a world of difference that she can come in from Killeen and help out,” said Rodriguez.
She has several more rounds of chemo but if all goes well and as planned she should be finished and on the road to recovery early next year. Meanwhile, the family is still planning for their future which includes her finishing school and a move to New York.
October is Breast Cancer Awareness month and all month KBTX and CHI St. Joseph Health are highlighting survivors, doctors and those affected.